green chili chicken curry – Indian hotel style

Green chili chicken curry prepared Indian hotel style. Seriously complex flavours brightened by green chilies and fresh tomatoes. If that sounds good, this one could be right for you.

This is Indian restaurant style cooking. But not like you think. It’s not what’s going on at your local takeaway. This is about making the absolute best curry you can.

Don’t let the simplicity of the recipe fool you. The ingredients may be humble. But there is big flavour here. Really big. It will surprise you. In a good way.

Green chili chicken curry in a carbon steel Indian bowl from above.

Hotel style is a new way to make Indian restaurant curries

If you already cook Indian restaurant style forget what you know. Just for a few minutes.

And read about green chili chicken curry. Prepared Indian hotel style. It’s a whole new way to think about Indian restaurant cooking.

New to me, anyway. I actually think it’s really old. I’m guessing this what Indian restaurant cooking used to be. Before it became what it is today.

What it was in the beginning. Somewhere along the way I’m guessing it was simplified. Adapted to scale. To work better in understaffed restaurants.

Indian hotel curry gravy became curry base. Something was found. But something was lost. Until now.

Close-up of green chili chicken curry in a carbon steel bowl from the front.

The evolution of curry base

Evolution in cooking is natural. Wonderful in fact. People figure things out. Other people hear about it. Pretty soon it’s the new standard.

Restaurants are all about efficiency. They are businesses. They need to keep costs in check. That’s why I’m pretty sure curry gravy evolved into curry base.

Because it’s less work to make. Keeps labour costs down. And profits up.

Think about it. It’s easy to chuck 100 pounds of onions into a huge pot. Add some water and spices. Boil. And puree. With a giant commercial stick blender.

That takes one guy maybe 3 hours in a restaurant kitchen. And he can make enough to feed an army some really good food.

Indian hotel curry gravy is completely different. It’s about deeply brown onions. Like traditional Indian cooking. But in a way that makes it available on demand. In a restaurant.

It is more work up front. And it doesn’t scale as well. It takes more people to make enough to run a restaurant.

But I’m not running a restaurant. I don’t have to cook for 100. I’m trying to make the best curries I can at home. So I can afford to take the time.

And I only have to do it once every 8 curries. Works out to about 5 minutes a meal. I like that math.

I’m going backwards here. And I’m really happy about it.

Indian hotel style green chili chicken curry, pilau and dal palak table scene from above.

This is a new way to make restaurant curry

This is about taking it to another level. Think about a curry base that is specific to a class of curries. This is tailoring the base to the specific style of curry.

And it’s actually easier than using curry base. The first few steps are similar. But there’s no frying the curry base. No splatter everywhere.

I’d still wear old clothes though. Turmeric stains are killer.

Close-up of a spoon in a serving dish full of green chili chicken curry.

Green chili chicken curry gravy

Green chili chicken curry is a big, bold curry. So it uses a big, bold curry gravy.

One with the flavours you’d expect in a madras, jalfrezi or ceylon curry. Sledgehammer base. In your face base.

It’s specialized. And it goes against what I have always said about curry base. But that’s because curry base is one size fits all. So it’s bland by design.

This is about matching the curry gravy to the dish. The right tool for the job. And that job is to get maximum flavour into your mouth.

Green chili chicken curry is a simple but seriously tasty curry done Indian hotel style. So you can judge for yourself. See if something humble can get you hooked.

Because if it does, you know all your favourites will blow you away.

Indian green chili chicken curry with rice and dal palak from the front.
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5 from 17 votes

Green chili chicken curry

This green chili chicken curry uses Indian hotel curry gravy to deliver flavours that are sure to please.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Keyword green chili chicken curry
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 598kcal
Author romain | glebekitchen


  • A skillet with a lid. Or a lid from another pot that fits your skillet. You will need to loosely cover while the chicken cooks.


The spice mix

  • 2 tsp Indian restaurant spice mix – recipe link below
  • 1 tsp kashmiri chili powder
  • 1 tsp kasoor methi – dried fenugreek leaves
  • 1/2 tsp tandoori masala – look for one that isn't mostly salt
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt (or 1/3 tsp of regular fine table salt)

Green chili chicken curry

  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil – any neutral oil is fine
  • 1/2 small onion – coarsely chopped. Shallot works well here if you have some.
  • 1 tbsp garlic ginger paste – recipe link below
  • 4 green chilies – finger hots also known as jwala, seeded and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 tbsp cilantro stems – minced
  • 1 cup Indian hotel curry base – recipe link below
  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken thighs – cut into 3 or 4 pieces each
  • 5 cherry tomatoes – cut in half
  • 1 tbsp cilantro leaves – finely chopped


Do your prep

  • Make your spice mix. Have your onions and cilantro chopped. Cut up your green chilies.

Make the green chili chicken curry

  • Heat the oil in a medium sized frying pan until the oil just starts to shimmer.
  • Add the onions and cook until the onions just start to brown at the edges. This should take around 3 minutes.
  • Stir in the garlic ginger paste, cilantro stems and green chilies. Cook until the garlic ginger paste stops sputtering.
  • Turn your heat down to medium low and add your spice mix. This is why you added 3 tablespoons of oil. You want to fry your spices in the oil. If you skimp on the oil you risk your spices sticking or burning. If your spices burn here you are starting over.
  • Add the Indian hotel curry gravy. Stir it really well to get the oil to combine with the curry gravy. You want everything mixed together at this point. Bring to a simmer.
  • Add the chicken thigh pieces in a single layer. Nestle them down into the sauce. Cover and cook about 5 minutes. Remove the cover, flip the chicken and recover. Cook until the chicken is done. Use an instant read thermometer if you have one. You are shooting for an internal temperature of 170F.
  • The sauce consistency should be about perfect. The juices from the chicken should be enough but if it looks dry add a couple tablespoons of water and stir to combine.
  • Add the cilantro leaves and stir. Then add the tomatoes and simmer just long enough to warm the tomatoes through.


Make your Indian hotel curry gravy ahead of time. 
I use this Indian restaurant spice mix in most of my Indian restaurant style curries.
For maximum flavour you really should make your garlic ginger paste from scratch.
You may notice there’s no tomato paste or passata in this recipe. The tomato comes from the hotel curry gravy. It’s there already.


Serving: 2servings | Calories: 598kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 161mg | Sodium: 969mg | Potassium: 891mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 673IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 4mg

35 thoughts on “green chili chicken curry – Indian hotel style”

  1. 5 stars
    Hello Romain,
    thanks for another excellent Hotel Style recipe. It’s a pity you weren’t around twenty years ago, mate; you would have saved me a lot of time and effort. Next up, the Madras!

    • It never really occurred to me to start a blog until around 6 years ago. I wish I’d started sooner as well:-). Hope you love the Madras!

  2. 5 stars
    I’m enjoying a night in, radio on, wine poured and I’ve just made this recipe again along with your dal tadka. I just love your recipes, they never disappoint and I am always left feeling so incredibly grateful to you for sharing them with us. Thanks Romaine.

    • Sounds like a great night in. I’m super happy to hear you are enjoying the recipes and always delighted to share!

  3. 5 stars
    Hi Romain, another great recipe! I loved it, the kids loved it and my wife who is traveling hated that she couldn’t have any of it. In other words, perfect on all accounts 😉 Thank you yet again for sharing your cooking knowledge with the rest of us! You have no idea of how much joy you bring to the table (pun intended)!

    • Haha. Delighted to hear that but sorry your wife missed it. Perhaps it will be dinner on the day she returns?

  4. 5 stars
    This was the first curry I’ve made using your “hotel base”. OMG, it was incredibly flavorful. Plates were wiped clean. I can’t wait for next weekend to use another batch on another recipe. Thank you again for sharing your recipes. I’m thinking of trying your Ceylon curry next time.

  5. Hey Romain
    Late to this party but made this last night and it was ace. Had second serving the following morning and I have to say the flavors seemed to improve overnight. A perfect elevenses, eaten at 9am. I’ll be working through my batch of 6 portions of your hotel base over the next couple of weeks, a different curry each time, although I reserve the right to repeat the vindaloo. Excellent recipes as always sir.


  6. 5 stars
    Made it last night…just WOW! The depth of flavour is outstanding! The hotel gravy was also out of this world delicious! I see how it takes curry to the next level! Thank you for sharing the technique and recipe!

  7. I made a double batch of green chilli chicken last night and it was incredible, and like most curries the leftovers were even better today.
    I recently freestyled a roasted eggplant and black lentil curry using hotel base, it was the best vegan curry I’ve ever had.
    I still use your restaurant base recipes regularly and get great results, but the hotel recipes have eliminated any desire I had to go out for curry.
    Again, thanks for the amazing website, I am eating more curry than ever since discovering it.

    • I don’t say this often but I’m impressing myself with the hotel style curries. Everything I make turns out better than I expect. I’m delighted to hear you are enjoying them as much.

      Love that you are free styling curries. I love roasted eggplant curries.

  8. I made you Ceylon Chicken Curry last week (fabulous). We grow all our own veg, and the abundance of Tomatoes and Onions at this time of year is a fantastic use of the produce to form the base. We are now looking forward to trying this Green Chilli Chicken one tomorrow night to use some of our Chillies and Coriander. Would adding a big handful of Spinach be considered a wrong move?

    I plan to work my way through each Indian Hotel Style Recipe: one a week. Please keep the recipes coming…….

    • I’m not sure I can keep them coming one a week but I will keep them coming for sure. Glad you are enjoying them!

      I think spinach would be good but I would blanch and drain the spinach well before adding it to the curry to avoid too strong a spinach taste.

  9. Ronan!! What a gezzer..!!
    Been trying out and working with these techniques what..a result I’ve been getting, brilliant the way you presented the recipes and techniques I now have a better understanding of the the interaction of spices and how simple tweak can change what we are tasting!! Brilliant that you share it with us

  10. I came across your website when I was looking to make a lamb dopiaza. I was amazed , I actually followed your recipes to make the curry base and then pre cooked my lamb and added spices. I will never order take away again haha my husband actually said it was better than a takeaway. Thank you a wonderful website

  11. I quite often make a large quantity of your recipes every Sunday evening ready for work lunches ahead for the week. People at work will always comment on how good it always smells.. I think this one will be a winner tomorrow.
    I really enjoy this hotel style, it makes everything a lot easier to make quickly without the mess/stress. I’m even thinking of trying to cook these outside on the Trangia. Thanks for these. Please post another soon!

  12. This was delicious! I have learned a new way of making curries and this has improved my curries tremendously. Your descriptions are very useful and helps me understand what steps are important and why. I have seen my mother and sister cook similar dishes but never understood the basic of what and why. Your site is very informational and easy. Thanks!!

  13. Hi Romain.
    This will be my next curry, I like the sound of the Naga chicken tikka Curry. Any plans for a madras? Any kind of meat will be great.

    Happy curries Ian

    • 5 stars
      I have to say, my first thought was oh no, it’s not a garlic chilli chicken! I absolutely loved the other recipe. Fear not, it doesn’t need the extra garlic pickle, there’s plenty of taste here – I’ve been waiting all week for this and it was worth the wait, it was delicious! Thank you Romain! Bring on that naga recipe ?

    • What a great comment. You put a big smile on my face!

      Sorry. I just did a garlic chilli chicken about a month ago so I thought it too soon. It will come. Glad you liked the green chili chicken in the meantime and super happy it didn’t disappoint!

  14. This looks like another tremendous curry, thank you, Romain. I’ll be on to this very soon. Super keen. Just wondering, would you have any vegetarian recipes using the hotel sauce in the pipeline? I’ll let you know how this one works out, many thanks!

    • Hope you like it! I don’t have one in the queue yet but in the meantime you could make the ones I’ve posted with chickpeas. You will need to thin your curry gravy a bit to replace the juices from the chicken though. I have a naga chicken tikka curry recipe coming soon that will explain that. The tikka is pre-cooked so the same thing happens.

    • Hi Romain. Loving this style of cooking. Can you post one each for styles ‘pathia’ and ‘dhansak’ which are my two favourites by far.
      Blue Skies

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